Hi, everyone! It is so humid these days. This week, we will introduce Ehime Prefecture in the Shikoku region.
The origin of the name Ehime derives from an excerpt of the oldest history book in Japan, “Kojiki (A Record of Ancient Matters)”; “The Province of Iyo is called Ehime.” As we can see from the word “Ehime” written in the “Kojiki,” we can fathom the extensiveness of Ehime’s history.
Prince Shotoku is said to have taken a bath in “Dogo Hot Spring,” the oldest hot spring in Japan located in Matsuyama City. The novel “Bocchan,” written by Soseki Natsume, took place in the Dogo Hot Spring, and it became a model for the public bath which appeared in Ghibli’s movie, “Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi (Spirited Away).”
The Murakami Pirates, partisans of the Muromachi Period to the Sengoku Period (Age of Provincial Wars), based their activities around the Seto Inland Sea off Imabari City, where it is renowned for Japan’s largest towel production. Of the eighty-eight temples associated with the footsteps of Buddhist monk Kobo Daishi (Kukai) on the island of Shikoku (known as the “Shikoku Pilgrimage”), twenty-five of them are scattered within Ehime Prefecture.
At the cove on the coast of the Uwa Sea, yellowtail, sea bream, and pearl are actively cultured. Local cuisine such as “Sea bream Somen (thin wheat noodles),” “Fuka no Yuzarashi (slices of boiled shark dipped into vinegar and miso),” and “Jako-Ten (fried minced fish)” are well-known. In taking advantage of the warm weather, citrus fruits such as Citrus unshiu, Iyokan, and Naval oranges are widely and voluminously cultivated that there is a myth that Pom juice (orange juice) comes out of faucets at home (which is untrue), and rice boiled with orange juice is served at school lunches (which seems to be true).